WBEZ | torture http://www.wbez.org/tags/torture Latest from WBEZ Chicago Public Radio en Senate releases report on CIA torture http://www.wbez.org/programs/worldview/2014-12-09/senate-releases-report-cia-torture-111208 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/AP582831822547.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>A report released by the Senate Intelligence Committee on the CIA&#39;s use of torture found the use of &quot;enhanced interrogation techniques&quot; did not get detainees to provide critical information. We&#39;ll discuss the report with Katherine Hawkins. Her organization had advocated for the report&#39;s release.</p><div class="storify"><iframe allowtransparency="true" frameborder="no" height="750" src="//storify.com/WBEZ/worldview-disappearances-in-colombia/embed?header=false&amp;border=false" width="100%"></iframe><script src="//storify.com/WBEZ/worldview-disappearances-in-colombia.js?header=false&border=false"></script><noscript>[<a href="//storify.com/WBEZ/worldview-disappearances-in-colombia" target="_blank">View the story "Worldview: Senate releases report on CIA torture" on Storify</a>]</noscript></div></p> Tue, 09 Dec 2014 11:48:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/programs/worldview/2014-12-09/senate-releases-report-cia-torture-111208 Attack on synagogue in Jerusalem http://www.wbez.org/programs/worldview/2014-11-18/attack-synagogue-jerusalem-111117 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/AP429120846110.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>Three Israeli-Americans and one British Israeli rabbi were killed in an attack on a synagogue in West Jerusalem. The BBC&#39;s Kevin Connolly reports from Jerusalem.</p><div class="storify"><iframe allowtransparency="true" frameborder="no" height="750" src="//storify.com/WBEZ/worldview-27/embed?header=false&amp;border=false" width="100%"></iframe><script src="//storify.com/WBEZ/worldview-27.js?header=false&border=false"></script><noscript>[<a href="//storify.com/WBEZ/worldview-27" target="_blank">View the story "Worldview: Attack on synagogue in Jerusalem" on Storify</a>]</noscript></div></p> Tue, 18 Nov 2014 11:22:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/programs/worldview/2014-11-18/attack-synagogue-jerusalem-111117 Torture and theater: Peas in a pod http://www.wbez.org/blogs/onstagebackstage/2012-05/torture-and-theater-peas-pod-99194 <p><p>Torture and theater always have gotten along like two peas in a pod. Take miracle plays, for example, the plays from the High Middle Ages that portray the lives of early Christian saints, with particular emphasis on the gruesome splendors of their martyrdoms. If a saint was skinned alive or spit-roasted over charcoal or vivisected, it gave the Medieval Special Effects Department a chance to shine, and the peasants loved it. From Jesus on down, where would Christianity be without torture?</p><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/5.%20Martyrdom%20of%20St.%20Apollonia.JPG" style="height: 402px; width: 300px; float: left;" title="The martyrdom of St. Apollonia"></div><p>Shakespeare didn't shy away from torture, either. Just consider old Gloucester having his eyes gouged out in <em>King Lear</em> or Richard II enjoying life in a cesspool—literally—or Lavinia being raped and maimed in <em>Titus Andronicus</em>. And Shakespeare showed tasteful restraint compared to some of his Elizabethan and Jacobean contemporaries.</p><p>For these early dramatic authors, there was absolutely no moral ambiguity about torture, which was legal, accepted and understood as something the powerful could and would use if they saw the need. Besides, it made for a good show, encompassing dramatic conflict and lurid physical action as it did.</p><p>But contemporary theater also is fascinated by torture, well aware that torture still is practiced by many nations (including our own) and non-governmental forces (you know, rebels and the like) even though torture is outlawed by numerous international agreements as well as the constitutions of most nations staking claim to being "civilized." What fascinates contemporary theater is precisely what Medieval, Elizabethan and Jacobean theater didn't question: the moral ambiguity of it.</p><p>This is exactly the territory award-winning journalist-turned-playwright John Conroy has carved out for himself in <em>My Kind of Town</em>, a play based on the ongoing Chicago police torture scandal without actually being either a history play or a documentary drama. Fictionalized from the facts uncovered by Conroy himself more than any other individual, <em>My Kind of Town</em> isn't concerned with the guilt or innocence of Jon Burge or Richard M. Daley, or with the guilt or innocence of the central police torture victim. Rather, it's concerned—as is most contemporary drama about torture—with what kind of person becomes a torturer and who the tortured are, and if torture ever is justified.</p><p>In the play, the wife of the accused detective talks about the sort of person who "is basically good" and the sort of person who "is basically evil" and sometimes it isn't as easy as it should be to tell the difference. Take the ambiguity of the colonel in <em>A Few Good Men</em> (the role played by Jack Nicholson in the film version), who sees himself as a patriot and a frontline defender of America's freedom. The detective in Conroy's play sees himself the same way, and so does his wife for a long time.</p><p>In generally equal numbers, we have as many plays in which the torturer is vicious as plays in which the tortured is vicious. They reflect real-world situations. Answer this one yourself: Is torture acceptable if it leads to information that saves hundreds or even thousands of lives? Should we uphold statutes against torture and allow terrorism to flourish?</p><p>In the last 25 years, some of our most influential playwrights have explored the issues and personalities of torture, among them Nobel Laureate Harold Pinter (<em>One for the Road</em>, 1984), Ariel Dorfman (<em>Death and the Maiden</em>, 1990), Martin McDonagh (<em>The Pillowman</em>, 2003) and Sarah Kane (<em>Cleansed</em>, 1998). More immediately, there have been numerous theater works about real-world torture scenarios in Abu Ghraib, Guantanamo and Bosnia.</p><p>Far beyond the context of theater, torture is an issue that will not go away. Almost everywhere it exists, it happens because higher-ups actively condone it or willfully remain in ignorance about it. Torture simply is not sustainable without complicity, and even theater does not always focus on this fundamental fact, although <em>My Kind of Town</em> makes it a central premise.</p><p>To the best of my knowledge, other animals do not torture each other. They attack, maim and kill each other in many ways and for various reasons, but they do not instinctively use pain, or the threat of it, as an instrument of compulsion. Torture, it seems, is found only among the human species, a blessing of sentience and abstract thinking.</p></p> Wed, 16 May 2012 08:36:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/blogs/onstagebackstage/2012-05/torture-and-theater-peas-pod-99194 UN Special Rapporteur on Torture discusses setbacks in abolishing torture http://www.wbez.org/worldview/2012-04-25/segment/un-special-rapporteur-torture-discusses-setbacks-abolishing-torture <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/juan-mendez.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>As a young attorney in Argentina, <a href="http://www.ohchr.org/EN/Issues/Torture/SRTorture/Pages/SRTortureIndex.aspx" onclick="window.open(this.href, '', 'resizable=no,status=no,location=no,toolbar=no,menubar=no,fullscreen=no,scrollbars=no,dependent=no'); return false;">Juan Mendez</a> was arrested and tortured by the military for representing political prisoners. After being deemed a &quot;prisoner of conscious&quot; by human rights watchdog <a href="http://www.amnestyusa.org/" onclick="window.open(this.href, '', 'resizable=no,status=no,location=no,toolbar=no,menubar=no,fullscreen=no,scrollbars=no,dependent=no'); return false;">Amnesty International</a>, he was exiled to the U.S. He then founded <a href="http://www.hrw.org/" onclick="window.open(this.href, '', 'resizable=no,status=no,location=no,toolbar=no,menubar=no,fullscreen=no,scrollbars=no,dependent=no'); return false;">Human Rights Watch</a>&#39;s Americas program in 1982. Now Juan is the UN&#39;s Special Rapporteur on Torture. He tells <em>Worldview </em>about torture&#39;s role within various judicial systems around the world.</p><p>&nbsp;</p></p> Wed, 25 Apr 2012 14:00:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/worldview/2012-04-25/segment/un-special-rapporteur-torture-discusses-setbacks-abolishing-torture Worldview 4.25.12 http://www.wbez.org/worldview/2012-04-25/worldview-42512-98531 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/AP120423039839.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>The UN-brokered ceasefire in Syria seems like a lost cause as Assad’s troops and the opposition continue their assaults. While other options to address the conflict have been suggested, few, if any, are good ones. <em>Worldview </em>assesses the situation in Syria with Mohyeddin Kassar, president of the <a href="http://www.syrianamericansociety.org/bootstrap/" onclick="window.open(this.href, '', 'resizable=no,status=no,location=no,toolbar=no,menubar=no,fullscreen=no,scrollbars=no,dependent=no'); return false;">Syrian American Society</a>. Also, <em>Worldview </em>talks with <a href="http://www.ohchr.org/EN/Issues/Torture/SRTorture/Pages/JuanMendez.aspx" onclick="window.open(this.href, '', 'resizable=no,status=no,location=no,toolbar=no,menubar=no,fullscreen=no,scrollbars=no,dependent=no'); return false;">Juan Mendez</a>, the UN Special Rapporteur on Torture. Mendez was himself a victim of torture under the Argentinean military dictatorship. And, Jerome and &nbsp;<a href="http://www.wbez.org/globalnotes" onclick="window.open(this.href, '', 'resizable=no,status=no,location=no,toolbar=no,menubar=no,fullscreen=no,scrollbars=no,dependent=no'); return false;">Global Notes</a> contributor <a href="http://catalinamariajohnson.com/" onclick="window.open(this.href, '', 'resizable=no,status=no,location=no,toolbar=no,menubar=no,fullscreen=no,scrollbars=no,dependent=no'); return false;">Catalina Maria Johnson</a> take a look at how 1970’s punk bands like The Ramones, The Sex Pistols and The Clash are influencing a new generation of musicians around the globe. They explore everything from punk-polka in Austria to Ukrainian gypsy music.</p></p> Wed, 25 Apr 2012 13:43:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/worldview/2012-04-25/worldview-42512-98531 Film ‘Beneath The Blindfold’ documents the lives of torture survivors in Chicago http://www.wbez.org/episode-segments/2012-01-10/film-%E2%80%98beneath-blindfold%E2%80%99-documents-lives-torture-survivors-chicago-95430 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/segment/photo/2012-January/2012-01-10/torture.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>The new documentary <a href="http://www.beneaththeblindfold.org/Home.html" target="_blank"><em>Beneath the Blindfold</em></a> delves into a gritty topic that's rarely discussed: how survivors of torture struggle to rebuild their lives.</p><p>In the film, four diverse individuals - a nursing home aide from Africa, an actor from Colombia, a U.S. navy veteran from Chicago, and a physician from Guatemala - share their battle to heal the physical and psychological wounds of torture, and reclaim their dignity. These individuals represent just four of the 500,000 torture survivors who currently live in the U.S.</p><p><em>Worldview</em> talks to Kathy Berger and Ines Sommer, the directors of the film, about the story they are trying to tell. Dr. Mary Fabri, a psychologist and senior director at the <a href="http://www.heartlandalliance.org/kovler/" target="_blank">Marjorie Kovler Center</a>, also provides analysis on how the effects of torture linger in our community. A part of Heartland Alliance, The Kovler Center is the pioneering torture treatment center that’s operated in Chicago for more than 25 years.</p><p><em>Beneath the Blindfold <a href="http://www.siskelfilmcenter.org/beneath-blindfold" target="_blank">debuts</a> this Friday at the Gene Siskel Film Center. The film also runs next week on Thursday, January 19.</em></p></p> Tue, 10 Jan 2012 17:43:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/episode-segments/2012-01-10/film-%E2%80%98beneath-blindfold%E2%80%99-documents-lives-torture-survivors-chicago-95430 Chicago could become first city in the U.S. to oppose all forms of torture http://www.wbez.org/episode-segments/2012-01-10/chicago-could-become-first-city-us-oppose-all-forms-torture-95428 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/segment/photo/2012-January/2012-01-10/mario.png" alt="" /><p><p>This Thursday, the Chicago City Council will consider a new resolution that publicly condemns torture. If it passes, it would make Chicago the first city in the U.S. to oppose torture in all forms. Anti-torture activists say they hope the resolution will send a strong message of solidarity against a practice that, they believe, is all too routine in prisons and conflicts around the world.</p><p><em>Worldview</em> talks to two Chicago residents who are pushing for the resolution. Mario Venegas was tortured under the Pinochet dictatorship in Chile; he's now a member of the <a href="http://illinoiscat.wordpress.com/" target="_blank">Illinois Coalition Against Torture</a>. And Dr. Frank Summers is a psychologist who works with torture survivors. He's also president-elect of the division of psychoanalysis at the <a href="http://www.apa.org/" target="_blank">American Psychological Association</a>. They explain why they want Chicago to take an explicit stand against torture.</p></p> Tue, 10 Jan 2012 16:08:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/episode-segments/2012-01-10/chicago-could-become-first-city-us-oppose-all-forms-torture-95428 Worldview 1.10.12 http://www.wbez.org/episode/worldview-11012 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/episode/images/2012-january/2012-01-10/460345resize.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>A resolution that calls for an end to torture will be brought before the Chicago City Council this Thursday. If the resolution passes, it would make Chicago the first city in the U.S. to oppose all forms of torture. Local residents Mario Venagas, a Chilean torture survivor, and Dr. Frank Summers, a psychologist, discuss why this resolution matters. Later, <em>Worldview</em> takes you inside the film <a href="http://www.beneaththeblindfold.org/Home.html" target="_blank"><em>Beneath the Blindfold</em></a> with directors Ines Sommer and Kathy Berger. The film follows four survivors of political torture as they try to overcome the lasting effects of their imprisonment and reclaim their dignity. It premieres this Friday at the <a href="http://www.siskelfilmcenter.org/strangerthanfiction2012" target="_blank">Gene Siskel Film Center</a>.</p></p> Tue, 10 Jan 2012 15:34:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/episode/worldview-11012 Judge: Daley can still be sued over alleged police torture http://www.wbez.org/story/judge-daley-can-still-be-sued-over-alleged-police-torture-93714 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/archives/images/cityroom/cityroom_20100909_shudzik_1750876_No E_large.png" alt="" /><p><p>Former Mayor Richard M. Daley is one step closer to being deposed in connection with alleged torture by Chicago police. On Wednesday a Federal judge ruled for the second time that Daley can be sued over alleged police torture.</p><p>The former mayor was the Cook County state's attorney back in the 1980s. That's when Michael Tillman was arrested for murder. Tillman says police under former commander Jon Burge tortured him into confessing. He says they put a gun to his head, poured soda in his nose and choked him with a plastic bag.</p><p>Last year Tillman was exonerated after two decades in jail, and then sued several people he says were connected to the torture, ranging from individual officers to Daley.</p><p>In July, Judge Rebecca Pallmeyer ruled that Daley can be included in Tillman's lawsuit in his capacity as mayor.</p><p>Daley's lawyers appealed, but Wednesday the judge shot them down again. Tillman's lawyers reportedly hope to question the former mayor as soon as next month.</p></p> Thu, 03 Nov 2011 12:14:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/story/judge-daley-can-still-be-sued-over-alleged-police-torture-93714 Daley staying mum on Burge scandal http://www.wbez.org/story/daley-staying-mum-burge-scandal-91532 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/story/photo/2011-September/2011-09-06/RS3083_daleypresser_4.JPG" alt="" /><p><p>Former Chicago Mayor Richard Daley is refusing to answer questions about the Jon Burge torture scandal. Attorneys for Burge torture victim Michael Tillman subpoenaed Daley and wanted to question him this week, but that's not going to happen.</p><p>Tillman is suing the now-imprisoned Burge as well as other officers and Daley. Tillman says Daley was part of the torture conspiracy because as the top prosecutor for Cook County and then later as mayor, Daley failed to investigate the scandal even as police torture became increasingly accepted as fact.</p><p>City-paid attorneys representing Daley are asking the judge to dismiss the former Mayor as a defendant in the case. A spokeswoman for the city's law department says until that issue is resolved, Daley will not answer questions under oath.</p><p>Tillman's attorney Flint Taylor says the city should not be wasting taxpayer dollars trying to obstruct the deposition. He says Daley needs to answer questions about the scandal.</p></p> Tue, 06 Sep 2011 10:08:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/story/daley-staying-mum-burge-scandal-91532